Charles Brooks, Jr., (September 1, 1942 – December 7, 1982), also known as Shareef Ahmad Abdul-Rahim, was a convicted murderer who was the first person in the United States to be executed using lethal injection. He was the first prisoner executed in Texas since 1964, and the first African-American to be executed anywhere in the United States of America in the post-Gregg era.
Fort Worth, Texas. He attended I.M. Terrell High School (named after its first principal Isaiah Milligan Terrell), where he played football.
He had a prior criminal history, having served time at the United States Penitentiary, Leavenworth for illegal possession of firearms.
On December 14, 1976, Brooks went to a used car lot and asked to test drive a car. The mechanic, David Gregory, accompanied him in the car. After Brooks picked up his accomplice Woody Loudres, they put the mechanic in the trunk of the car and Brooks and Loudres drove to a motel. There the mechanic was bound to a chair with coat hangers, gagged with tape and then shot once in the head. Neither Brooks nor Loudres would say who fired the shot and therefore the State sought the death penalty for both Brooks and Loudres. Loudres received a 40 year sentence; Brooks received the death sentence.
The Supreme Court of the United States rejected by 6–3 a petition to grant a stay of execution. The State Board of Pardons and Paroles recommended by 2–1 that the execution should proceed.
While Brooks was on death row Ellis Unit housed condemned men.
After a last meal consisting of a T-bone steak, french fries, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, biscuits, peach cobbler and iced tea, Brooks was rolled into the death chamber at the Huntsville Unit in Huntsville, Texas. There he made his final statement. Brooks had converted to Islam while in prison and as such said a prayer to Allah.
Brooks was executed on December 7, 1982. He was the first person ever to receive lethal injection.